Hi FK, It’s one thing to get married with the expectation that our partner cares about us and our happiness and totally another thing to get married because we DEPEND on them for our feelings of worthiness and happiness. In the first case we are in control of our expectations and boundaries and in the second, we are trying to be in control of our partner. Self reliance requires us to accept responsibility for our own happiness and not hold others accountable for it through abdication. Of course, the concept of “self reliance” and its importance can be up for… Read more »
Omar Khayyam said, “A person will like everything, even the flaws, of their beloved, but will be annoyed at the perfection of those whom he does not love.” For a truly loving man, you are always beautiful, even with messy hair and even in your oversized nightgown. He will not notice that you have gained a couple of extra pounds after the winter holidays if you do not say it yourself. But if your man constantly tells you to go to the gym or hints that you need plastic surgery, do not rush to indulge him. It is most likely that it’s not your appearance that doesn’t suit him but you yourself. And even if you lose weight, he will find other faults in you.
Maintain appropriate boundaries. Remind yourself constantly that your loved one's unhappiness is not your own. You may become unhappy in response to their unhappiness, but your unhappiness then becomes your responsibility. You will be tempted to resolve your unhappiness by trying to resolve their unhappiness (not to mention, in a time frame that suits you), but that way leads only to frustration and resentment. Treat the two as separate things that require separate solutions.
That sounds way easier than it was. It was hard. It was agonizing to walk away from a relationship that brought so much happiness, peace and contentment in my life. It’s hard to give up those dreams I had with my ex: the children I was going to have, the life we were going to lead. I come from a family with a depressed parent, and it was HARD for me to break my pattern of “caretaking” and co-dependency and taking on all the responsibility. I feel sad to lose someone I love, angry at him and myself, guilty for “abandoning” my boyfriend. And yet I’ve seen up close from my own parents what Julia is 1.1 says:  if they can’t take responsibility and take care of themselves, there’s little hope of having a functional relationship until they do. And I’ve done so much work to get to a happy, contented point in my life that I can’t give that up now, just to hold onto a relationship that isn’t meeting my needs.
@lonelywife I’m sorry to have upset you, I didn’t mean my comment as a smug or I’m better than someone else type comment. I meant is as a push towards taking every effort to stay together – not for people with abusive partners- absolutely not, they should protect themselves emotionally and/or physically. I am on here because I just found out about my family member that revealed their marriage is just a piece of paper now and they are living separately under the same roof. They are actually good friends and seem fine with it but have children – and I think they just missed out on date night (which they did) for 5 years and could give themselves a second chance. That is why I was searching out for information on marriages and divorce. I just know my parents and my husband’s parents have been together for over 30 years each and they went in ups and downs, it wasn’t all perfect of course, but they are still happy they are together through everything. Love is a funny thing, and some people have what it takes to be life long partners and there are a lot of benefits to that for themselves AND their children – and then there are people who just aren’t good together period. I just think people in our generation are getting too caught up in what makes them happy in the moment without really valuing what they have built thus far together and the long term future – especially if they are having fun meeting someone new without giving their marriage a full chance. Hope you understand where I was coming from now.
It's normal to feel a twinge of jealousy whenever you think about your single friends going out there and doing whatever they want, talking to different guys and flirting with anyone without guilt. But if you feel that way most of the time, that's a sign that you're looking for something different than what you have. Pay attention to how often you feel jealous of their lifestyle.
If your formerly even-tempered partner has suddenly developed a short fuse, it’s time to take a hard look at the relationship. For one thing, venting their anger at you like this is not cool and needs to be addressed right away. But as for what it means within the relationship, life coach Kali Rogers told Bustle, "If you notice a shift in patience, that could be a sign your partner isn't happy with your compatibility,” adding, “Short fuses are common when people are unhappy in relationships, and [are] a way for your partner to get pent-up anger out."
Steve Horsmon is a Certified Professional Life Coach and owner of Goodguys2Greatmen Relationship Coaching in Livermore, Colorado. He has appeared on local television, blog radio, telesummits, and podcasts all related to maintaining healthy relationships. Steve provides intensely personal, action oriented coaching services for men. He provides 1-on-1 coaching, private retreats and workshops designed to give men new knowledge, skills and mindset to achieve their relationship goals. He is a committed, lifelong mentor who teaches his clients to discover their masculine power, take bold action and create the life they want. He has written articles and guest blogs for numerous relationship and expert websites including his own blog. You can connect with him via  Facebook too.
Think about what your conversations are like. Can you talk to your boyfriend like he's your best friend? Do you share secrets, talk about your dreams, discuss the things that really make you sad, get into passionate discussions? If so, that's great! But if your conversations are boring and strictly about gossip, work, school, your parents or movies and there's no depth to them, that's not a good sign. You should connect to the person you're dating on a deeper level then just talking about what's going on in your lives.

My husband and I have been together for almost four years and I think he's pretty amazing. He works hard, he's thoughtful, and he's the absolute best at making me laugh when I'm feeling down. I'll admit, though, that I'm not always the best at reminding him of these things. I am, however, really good at reminding him of many other things — like how he forgot to take out the trash again, or that the way he loads the dishwasher isn't as efficient as the way I do it. I get it, and I'm trying my best to be less of a critic.


Evan, I’m de-lurking to say this post is BRILLIANT. Thank you a million times over for this! I’ve been feeling sad since dumping a moody guy last month, and this is just what I needed to hear. You’ve helped me feel so much better about my decision. I hear a lot of my male friends complain about dating women who are “downers,” but rarely do I hear my female friends complain about moody men, so I was torturing myself about dumping this guy. I wanted to believe he’d snap out of it, but he didn’t, so… goodbye and good luck to him. Thank you, Evan, for your perspective as someone who has “been there,” and thank you for reminding women that we deserve better.
I have been married to my wife for 4 years now. Our marriage got into trouble a couple of months into it. I have issues that needed to be dealt with, including my bout with visual enhancement (i dont want to call it pornography because it really isn’t since it doesn’t involve nudity, but let’s just say it isn’t appropriate for a man to look at while married to his wife.) It’s something that has been a part of me for 20 years, but have been seriously battling it for the last 5 years. I’ve had ups and downs, but with my wife complaining months into our marriage while i was trying to serve in our church because i loved to, she complained about the apartment we lived in, she complained about the money i was making, she complained about everything and she started showing her misery with life, then i got sick and was admitted into the hospital. During that period while i was trying to recoup in the hospital, my wife got into it with my sister and sent her a nasty e-mail which made my sister cry. The wife then tells me i need to stay at my mother’s house to recoup because she had to care for our three month old son. It was that interim when i tried to recoup from surgery that she refuses to talk to me and leaves me dry. When I get back after two weeks she lets out all these issues between us, mainly that she has declared my mother and sister her enemy because of percieved attempts on their part to dethrone her as my wife. She couldn’t prove half of her accusations, but more importantly she’s not sorry that she hurt my sister with that wicked e-mail. We then went into counseling but she only went because she declared i was the sole problem for the marriage. Her unrepentance, in her mind, was not a factor. She forced me to ban my mother from our house, ban my sister from having a relationship with our son, declared my family people non-grata, and gets upset everytime i visit my mom or honor her on mother’s day. She doesn’t understand having my mother, who raised me without my dad around, sacrificed her life to give me what i needed, banned from MY house is hurting me in so many ways, yet she doesn’t care. She has her family to go to, her friends she can see any time, and yet her response to me when i bring that up is “you made yourself second.” Ultimately, my wife did not want ANY hand in helping me deal with my own “sexual” problems. Instead I had to deal with it on my own. The sex between us became a problem, the fact that she totally disrespected me in front of our first counselor by bringing up stuff about me and blindsiding me, like the whole “semi-pornography” as i’ll call it from here, and leaving me to the wolves. She entered each counseling session with the intent of embarassing me and in her mind “fixing me,” yet never intending to deal with her issues. After a few episodes of her physically assaulting me (something to this day she NEVER apologized for,) insulting my relatives and causing a near brawl because of her selfish actions, and ultimately throwing me under the bus instead of working with me after i did commit an error against my wife. The error i committed can be construed as adultery, but it did not involve me having an affair or any kind of relationship with another woman. But it did involve me preparing to do some kind of extra curricular activity. Bottom line, even though that did cause a strain, my wife agreed we would work it out. Yet after 3 years, she not only disrespects me in front of my son, she not only acknowledges having my mother, who is very old, totally on the outside of our family while she enjoys the benefits of having her family in on EVERY outing and occasion we have, like our son’s birthday for example, she not only curses me out and reminds me of my sins against while justifying her sins (like posting an ad on a dating site, then when she was caught she lied TWICE about it to me,) she kicked me MULTIPLE times for the year I was unemployed and looking for work while attending school. During my unemployment she never offered ONCE to help pay for my school tuition, threatened to kick me out of the house, sometimes threatened to have her family beat the crap out of me, and got upset when i tried to do some work outside of school for experience because it interfered with her sleep time. And through all of this, she justifies it all, NEVER APOLOGIZED for any of the bad stuff she did and continues to do, yet blames the failing marriage on me. I was wrong with the stuff I did onto her and wish I can take it back, but it’s not enough even if I got from counselor to counselor and acknowledge i was wrong. She to this day insists it’s all my fault and i have no reason to feel any pain. I’m in a box, my wife resents that i feel any emotion not coinciding with hers, and makes me feel bad for expressing any kind of pain. We are currently seeing a counselor, and i have been talking to this counselor about my “semi-pornography” thing, but my wife even scoffs at that, too…I have been seriously thinking about moving out and ultimately getting a divorce. My wife is not serious about fixing this. She just wants to destroy me and then claim she tried to fix this. I am boxed in, and guilted into thinking i have no right to feel sadness or pain…
Examples of this behavior are “when everything seems like it's going great and then they all of sudden don't return any of your texts, or wait five-plus hours before texting you back when you usually text constantly, or you don't set the next date plan for a week, or not at all even, and your typical relationship modus operandi is to always have the next date planned at the end of the previous one.”
If I am talking to someone who might have a different outlook from mine I find areas that we do have a common experience and talk and laugh about that.  Expecting to be entertained by your mate does not seem to be very realistic or mature.  I understand the pull and the excitement that the back and forth banter can create, but lets be real that kind of banter is all about being INTERESTING not INTERESTED.  If you find someone who does that with you, you will most likely end up with someone who will compete with you for attention.
Are these rules and changes familiar to you? Is his parents’ marriage like this? Did something change in his life short after your wedding? Honestly, have you seen any sign of these trades of his personality before the wedding? If your chemistry is so amazing, what kind of hurt and time is he talking about? What is he talking about :0)? After reconciling not too long ago, what is causing the problem now? The old stuff?
Sometimes we love those people who don’t love us back and as devastating as that is, all we can do is move on. I was in love with a guy for almost 6 years and I went through a lot of ups and downs. Out of the blue he basically told me he didn’t love me anymore and this is where our chapter ends. After 6 years, that’s all I got. I grappled with the thought for weeks and then I just accepted that this person no longer loved me. Regardless of how much love I poured into it, they didn’t even love me back or care. I was devastated, this happened months ago and I’m still devastated ya know but time heals everything. I know I gave it my all and that person decided that it wasn’t good enough for them. What do you do? You gotta pick up the pieces of your broken heart, take care of yourself, and move on. It’s not the end of the world, it just feels like it right now because your heart is broken. From one broken-hearted girl to the other, we are strong beautiful women and we will get through it. It was a setback but it’s not over for us. GOD bless you and I pray for peace, joy, and true love for you and anyone else suffering from an earth shattering heartbreak.
Changing how you respond involves taking a step back, and carefully considering what to say and do. I found it helpful to talk to a counselor, because I didn’t know what my “triggers” where, and how my behavior affected my husband. If you need help with your marriage, I encourage you to talk to a counselor, and get an objective and balanced perspective.
My wife and I have been together for 3 years. We rushed into things (met and married within a year). We have a 2 year old and a child on the way. I’m concerned that we’re growing apart. Some background on her: She doesn’t have much of an education, comes from an impoverished and (extremely abusive) family, lacks a lot of motivation for even daily chores (picking up after oneself for instance), and relegates her time to being on the phone at the expense of properly caring for our child. When I met her, she worked hard to try and support her family (basically they light money on fire and can’t afford food b/c of mismanagement). After marriage, she’ll lay about the house making sure our “child is still alive” (she’ll plop the kid in front of the TV for MUCH longer than we agreed was healthy and nap much longer also to what we agreed upon. She’ll then lie about it). The home is largely neglected: cockroaches, flies, and mice don’t bother her (neither does mold, bacteria, or giant mounds of dirty laundry and stuff cluttering the floor. And this is with me picking up after myself –and our child when I have time–). Before people jump on my back, when we met she expressed her undying wish to be a stay-at-home mom more than anything in the world. I work two jobs to make that happen. I manage our funds, health, food, utilities and keep her up to date with it all as I’m teaching her how I’m managing money and such. She shows a lack of motivation to fully involve herself with our child, has a terrible habit of lying, no motivation to manage the house, and doesn’t really manage her own hygiene. Further, I feel like she just doesn’t care that much about it. This is compounded by stubbornness that eventually costs big bucks when she neglects her health and then she needs surgery or something costing us thousands rather than pennies if she kept up with herself.
we have been together for 17 years and married for 14, yes after time we did not value you each other, and our marriage became a chore when i found out he was on a chat site. he told me then he was not happy but only after i found out he was on the chat site. but never before that, i have found messages and pics on his phone. i literally have to sneak his phone when he has passed out as he keeps that phone so close to him he never lets it out of his site even if he goes to the loo. he told me he wanted a divorce with a sms message> but still wants me only for sex……. i just give in because I love him.
Me and my husband have been together for almost five years but we have only been married for 6 months. We have a 3 year old and a newborn together. For some reason this pregnancy that I just recently went throuh was the hardest thing I have ever had to do. It seems like right when I got pregnant and right when we got married he just started going out and like always hunting all of a sudden when I needed him the most. Everything I say seems to be wrong, he gets defensive no matter what it’s like everyone is out to get him but really everyone is just trying to help him. He drinks every single day and thinks he has no problem, my daughter loves him dearly but I just think I am only staying here for her sake and I know that I should be happy too. I am not sexuall attracted to him what so ever anymore because all he ever does is drink beer and not work half the time and never helps with anything around the house. I am just so done with it all and eveyone I know thinks that I am crazy for even being here at all anymore. I am just so scared of raising two kids on my own because I just feel like I will fail them and it is not their fault that their father doesn’t want to do the right thing and that’s why I am so scared and confuse when it comes to making that final decision. Ugh it is just so hard I am in my twenties and just feel so helpless!!!!
Maintain appropriate boundaries. Remind yourself constantly that your loved one's unhappiness is not your own. You may become unhappy in response to their unhappiness, but your unhappiness then becomes your responsibility. You will be tempted to resolve your unhappiness by trying to resolve their unhappiness (not to mention, in a time frame that suits you), but that way leads only to frustration and resentment. Treat the two as separate things that require separate solutions.
Even though it solves nothing, I have Google and read over a thousand things like this. Because I’m lost and pissed off at myself for being lost. We dated for a year and 3 month, and I thought “this is it, he is the one for me”. It’s been long distance and I was finally getting everything in order for me to move across the world so that we could be together. And then, the breakup. He doesn’t know what he wants, he’s not sure if he will always feel this way, and finally today, to give myself so sort of closure, I told him that if he truly doesn’t love me anymore: say it. He did. So now I’m here, broken hearted and confused. But also, empowered and excited for the future even though I can’t stop crying. I have no idea where life will lead me next and of course I’m sad because I still love him. But mostly, i am grieving for the fact that I really believed this man, who hurt me this bad, was going to be the person I’d spend my life with. I’ve written down why he was wrong for me and I’m carrying it with me everywhere I go. He was emotionally closed off. We had a poor sex life. He was half a world away most of the time. I have my life planned and I know what I want. It’s not him, it was never him and if I can remind myself that enough I know I’ll be okay in time. Stay strong ladies, we don’t deserve anyone who doesn’t see our worth.
I gave up my whole life -left my job, family and friends to move to another country to be with my husband. So while in his country I was using his laptop and found a few women’s pictures that were very provocative. I managed to get into his email and found many messages he had been commnicating with women before I came. I confronted him and it was the same answer. I, however, forgave him.
Sure, it would be nice every once in a while, but realize that men are wired differently than us. What we are thinking in our head that he should do is almost always not what he is going to do. Realize that all those romantic movies are most likely written by women. Don't let your expectations exceed your reality because you've been watching too many romantic comedies and reading too many books.

Men can be sometimes so hard to decode and it can be a problem because we all want to make our man happy. That is why I honestly recommend this amazing book by James Bauer that literally changed my life. Believe me, after reading this you will both get so much closer and, hopefully, will end up tying the knot. That is what happened to me and my man!


For some reason your roommate—er, life partner—has been following you around all night, when all you want is to finish up the evening's menial tasks so that you can commune with your true passion (i.e., DVR'd episodes of Game of Thrones), tapping you on the shoulder and asking you inane questions about electric toothbrushes and dry cleaning and RSVPs. Is he trying to be irritating? I'm guessing that no, he is not trying. (It comes naturally! Hey-oh!) Chances are he's hungry for a little attention, and is therefore resorting to the grown-up's version of sleeve-tugging. Give it to him—not only will you be nurturing your relationship, but you'll increase your chances of getting a foot rub while you catch up with the Lannisters.
Me and my husband have been together for 12 years and married for 6 we have 2 children we have hit a really rocky patch, he was working 18 hours shifts no intemacy and i had a gambling problem. this week i have caught him cheating he has been leaving and coming back for the last month and in that time he formed a relationship with a local know marriage wrecker she prays on relationships that she knows are going through tough times. i initially threw him out, but i have taken him back but i am struggling with the images, im struggling with all the lies that has been told, and i am struggling with the fact that he is defending her. I really love him and i want to get us through this, but im not sure how to re build our relationship?
If I am talking to someone who might have a different outlook from mine I find areas that we do have a common experience and talk and laugh about that.  Expecting to be entertained by your mate does not seem to be very realistic or mature.  I understand the pull and the excitement that the back and forth banter can create, but lets be real that kind of banter is all about being INTERESTING not INTERESTED.  If you find someone who does that with you, you will most likely end up with someone who will compete with you for attention.
According to Cole, there are four behaviors that are super-destructive to relationships. If one or more is present in your relationship, you could be on the fast track to loveless-ness (if you're not there already). Every time you criticize your partner — by attacking, blaming, and putting the fault on them by flinging negative statements like "You're always running late," or "You never do anything right" — you corrode your connection. By being defensive and refusing to accept responsibility, or attacking in response to feedback from your partner, you chip away at the trust and goodwill in your marriage. If you have an attitude of contempt, and call your partner names or make stinging, sarcastic remarks, you imply that you're superior and your partner is defective. And every time you stonewall one another, or emotionally shut down instead of openly addressing the issues, you create more distance and dishonesty, rather than openness, communication, and love. If any (or all) of these sounds familiar, schedule couples' therapy to discuss why you do these things — and how you can fix them.
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